Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Eye Doctor Follow-Up/Nightmare In Gold

     Went back in yesterday afternoon, too see if things had stabilized.  They had, which I had thought would be the verdict.  My big gray floater has mostly moved off to the side, the flashes seem to have ended, the black specks still hover at the edge of my vision (leaving me, from time to time, reacting to things that only I can see but which are really there, just very near and tiny instead of farther away and huge) and the hordes of tiny ones are as ignorable as ever.

     It's more weird than horrible and remember, this is the good outcome.  As I understand it, if you're nearsighted enough, it's practically inevitable that something like this will happen -- and the other things like this involve retina tears or detachment.  Instead, the big blob of gel that fills the eye came away from my retina and some floaters got in, really the lest-bad outcome by a very wide margin.

     This is all well and good but in the meantime, arranging things so the ophthalmologist can take a very good look involves not the usual simple set of eye drops but three different ones: a topical numbing agent (!) and two different dilating ones.  Last time, it was a fine gray fall day and I went out for leisurely lunch afterwards, shielded by my sunglasses.  Yesterday, the plan was to go back to work.

     That was the plan, and a fine cold, clear day it was.  I put my sunglasses on as the doctor walked me back to the lobby and even there, I was noticing light sources and brightly-illuminated surfaces had a bit of a glow, a sunburst or "glory" effect. It was a bit after 4 p.m. when I paid up and walked out, squinting -- and was blinded by the glare when I turned to go west on the sidewalk!  If I looked up facing the Sun, there was nothing but a golden fog, though which slightly darker shapes drifted.

     By looking down and holding up a hand, I made it to the corner and around to my car.  I flipped down sun visors and managed to drive slowly down shady side streets to home, a bit under a mile and all stoplights or 4-way stops, and by that point, I was plain done.  The sun was streaming into the kitchen over the cafe curtains* and bouncing from the tiled surfaces and it was somehow worse than outdoors.  Bright golden lances were coming in the dining room widows and through the "piano window" high in the living room wall, but at least it was dimmer.  My bedroom is set up with blackout shades and curtains; I threw my coat on a hook and headed there mostly on somatic memory.  Sat in the dark and thought; called my boss and confessed I was not going to be back and why, and laid down. Ten minutes later, work rang back with a trivial question, which was both insulting and predictable: it was a fine, sunny day, and I suppose someone whose pupils weren't so dilated you could barely see the iris might've been tempted to play hooky.  Me, after that call I tried looking at Facebook on my phone through sunglasses (not a good idea, too bright), then laid in the dark until I fell asleep.

     The cats woke me at their dinner time, which was after sundown -- sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat proved necessary to cope with the overhead lights and I still found looking up was not a good idea.  The computer room/study was a particular nightmare; the kitchen was bearable  I grabbed myself a little snack while the cats ate and returned to the blissful darkness.  At some point, I woke up again and changed to sleepwear,† turned on my Kindle with the brightness way way down, and started a new story in the anthology I was reading.  It was about a landing on Mercury that turned out to be too close to the sunward side.‡  For some reason it was particularly vivid.  I still fell asleep halfway through.
* Boys, that means the curtain rods are only about halfway up the windows.  This is normally a nice, sunny arrangement.  Yesterday it was more of a nightmare.  I find I have a little more sympathy for vampires than previously.
† For the imaginative, I am sorry to ruin whatever image you have but at this time of the year, heavy flannel is standard.
‡ It was an old story -- it turns out Mercury isn't stuck with one side facing the Sun after all, and there went some striking SF images.


Old NFO said...

That is truly painful. When I had mine checked, I had to have somebody drive me home. I couldn't see/didn't want to have a wreck. Went back the next day and picked up the truck. Hope you get better soon.

Alien said...

BTDT. Few decades back had cryo for a developing retinal tear (too near the edge to reach with lasers of the day) and you can guess what creating the necessary scar tissue from the back of the eye involves. Since then that eye has been similar to your experience.

In the week leading up to each eye exam since I've conducted ritual sacrifices and made burnt offerings to the God of Cloudiness. I realize that they have regular lives, but is it too much to ask for ophthalmologists to have one day a month of nighttime appointments?

Anonymous said...

Also nearsighted, and your vintage. Not looking forward to dealing with this in the near future...

"† For the imaginative, I am sorry to ruin whatever image you have but at this time of the year, heavy flannel is standard."

Bad news: The more that's hidden, the more the male mind imagines what just *might* be hidden. (Up north, decades ago, in wintertime I lived in long underwear. Quite comfy.)

My CPA sister has a saying: "All men are scum. If you forget it, they *will* remind you of it..."


We guys just can't win fer nothing... :)

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

Over here, it's now sweatshirt-and-sweatpants weather on the distaff side, topped with a doubled-over, full-size fluffy down-alternative comforter.

Till about 4AM, at which point the hot flashes start, the covers fly off, and the little bedside fan gets turned on. :)

Which also seems to be the cue for the cats to start stomping on us, but that's another story.

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

Oh, and, massively nearsighted here, too; I really hate getting my pupils dialated, because that's pretty much it for looking at computer screens for the rest of the day.

Ritchie said...

" the black specks still hover at the edge of my vision (leaving me, from time to time, reacting to things that only I can see but which are really there, just very near and tiny instead of farther away and huge)"
Just one more reason there are no old, old fighter pilots. I wonder if some extra G would settle those babies down. It was the possibility of retinal problems that sparked my interest in AR15s and pistol grip shotguns.

Anonymous said...

Floaters on the perepherery of your vision and a severe case of arachophobia is a bad combination.